Joy Us garden

garden. create. make the world a more beautiful place.

Thoughts On Leaving My Beloved Garden

When I created my garden, of course I had no intentions of moving. Here I share my thoughts on leaving behind my beloved garden full of succulents & other wonderful plants. Sad but exciting! Now I get to create a new garden at my new home.

leaving my beloved garden - Nell Foster gardening

When I created my garden, I certainly didn’t do it with the intention of 1 day leaving it.  Life deals us a different hand of cards at different times of our lives and I never want to be opposed to change.  I’m leaving Santa Barbara and will be moving out of California this weekend, which I never thought I’d do.  And that means that I’m leaving my beloved garden.

My beloved garden in Santa Barbara

I created this garden and have spent a lot of time in it over the past 10 years.  The temperate coastal climate here entices you to spend a lot of time outdoors.  I love to work (more like play!) in my garden and I love to sit in it.  My garden brings me buckets of joy and although we don’t have 4 seasons, it definitely changes a bit throughout the year.

Side yard in Santa Barbara

Something like a living room or a dining room is easy to recreate in a new home if you take your furniture with you.  Gardens are different, aren’t they?  They’re specific to the site and the environment.  Even if you just move across town, your garden will be different.  And a cross country move, well that’s a whole new bag.  I’m originally from New England and it would be very hard, almost impossible, for me to recreate this garden in that climate.

Nell Foster gardening

Gardens are so personal, especially if you’ve created it.  It takes time for a garden to grow in.  I planted a small 5 gallon Mediterranean Fan Palm in 2008 to shield the ugly gas meters in my front garden from view.  It’s finally grown in and now makes a mighty fine block but it took a while.

Nell gardening in Santa Barbara

I look at this garden, which really isn’t mine anymore (it belongs to the new owner now but I’ve stayed on for a few months) and it puts a big smile on my face.  Really, from ear to ear!  Even though I have to leave it, there are a few things which make it okay.

It was a very enjoyable creative process and 1 of my favorite things to do is to design with plants.  I got to watch the garden change and grow over the years which tickled my heart.

Someone new gets to enjoy it now, not to mention all the compliments from the neighbors it has garnered.

I’ll always remember it.  And, I have blog posts & videos about this garden to look back on.

Patio area in the garden

I’d be really sad to leave this beautiful garden except that I get to create a new garden at my new home. And you get to be part of it this time.  I get to learn a new soil type, a new environment and lots about new plants.  For a plant hound like me, that means big time excitement – like jump up and down, wave the arms and pop the cork.

Gardens are very special and very personal.  And although I can’t take it with me, I can take lots of cuttings and some of my plants in pots.  A garden is love … and I can’t wait to show you my new garden!

Big hugs from my garden to yours,

Nell's signature

Share this!


  1. Beautiful garden and such a lovely place you have created over the years. It sure must be sad to leave it but it sounds like you are ready and have accepted it. Now you can plan your new garden and start a new adventure.

  2. Thank you Cindy. So well put – sad but also exciting. On to a new garden! Best, Nell

  3. Leaving a garden is like leaving a dear friend. I did the same thing several years back. I’ve been in the PNW for a couple years now and have been relearning gardening after living in the Midwest. The adventure continues.

  4. uae visa provider

    Wow Such A beautiful Garden. Good Working 🙂

  5. It must be so hard to leave your beloved garden, but at least you have all the excitement of a new one to discover!

  6. Yes, it was hard to leave but I have many pictures & videos to remember it by. I look forward to “playing” in my new garden! Nell

  7. Yes, it was hard to leave. I moved to the desert so I’m embarking on a totally new garden adventure. It’s an ongoing process, always! Nell

  8. I really like it when you say “I get to”! Never “I have to”.

  9. Susan – I always like to be open to new things, especially as I get older. I’m in my new home & I now get to create my new garden! Cheers, Nell

  10. Nell your garden was absolutely beautiful and I know you will miss it. I also know that you have a unique ability to create beauty all around you wherever you are. Your new garden will be a lovely sanctuary where your love of all that grows and your respect for living things will nourish your soul. You are a very special person and I wish you happiness and joy in this next chapter of your life.

  11. Hi Debbi – Thank you! I loved my old garden but have a wonderful new one here to create. I’m loving my new home here in Tucson & look forward to your visits here. Also, I’ll be heading your way one of these days! xxoo to You & John, Nell

leave us a comment!

Thanks for joining the conversation!

This post may contain affiliate links. Please check our policies here.